Shantae Johnson emerged from the greenhouse at Mudbone Grown, her small, family-owned farm in east Multnomah County, and walked toward the summer interns sitting around the remnants of a campfire. Her brown Carhartt overalls were dirty at the knees. An easy smile crossed her face.
She looked at her phone. It was 11:30 a.m.
“Have you had enough of a break?” Johnson asked. The interns murmured affirmatives in the way only teenage boys can and made their way down a grassy hill, around a shed filled with shovels and toward neat rows of cabbage, kohlrabi and kale.
On their way, they passed Johnson’s husband, Arthur Shaver, who sat at the edge of a trench in the dusty Mudbone parking lot, surveilling damage done after a truck drove over the farm’s irrigation system.
Shaver is surrounded by broken pieces of PVC and boxes of new parts. He drove to Canby that morning for a new pressure regulator, which set him back $160. Then he forgot a part and had to drive to Home Depot.